Elman Gonzales arrived in America when he was 2 years old. “I have no recollection of Honduras…America is my home, ” he says.
Elman was brought here illegally by his parents, who escaped the horrible conditions of his birth country. Elman is known as a DREAMER and now has DACA.
DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) gives Elman the necessary tools to be a productive citizen in America. These tools are a drivers license, social security number and a work authorization card.
Elman was recently attending East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, TN until his tuition started to add up where he had to pay out-of-state tuition.
Elman told me he worked up to three jobs a semester to pay for a handful of classes.
He now attends Middle Tennessee State University under a scholarship which cuts the difference of out-of-state and in-state tuition for him…making college affordable for him.
It was the first time an event like this has happened on Middle Tennessee State University’s campus.
Hundreds of students, teachers, and families gathered to participate in the Hands Across MTSU event.
The idea is to create a chain of people that extended the length of campus…then everyone was instructed to hold hands.
SGA President Courtney Brandon was filled with joy at the results of the planned event, “It did connect all the way and I think that is awesome.”
The chain of people signified the unity and support the MTSU community has.
There was little opposition to the event, with the only complaint being it was hard to get to class. The chain started at the Student Union Building and ended at Peck Hall.
This event showcased the idea of unity and, ” Its something i feel like is going to be successful and really has an impact on our school.” says Sophomore Megan Cole.
HERMITAGE, Tenn. — The 36th annual Hermitage pow wow, just a few miles outside of Nashville brought in a large crowd over the weekend.
What is a Pow Wow?
A pow wow is a ceremonial event that celebrates the meaning of life. It is a gathering of Indians and is a tradition that is passed through the generations.
The event was held by the Native American Indian Association of Tennessee.
The organization, “Represents the almost 20,000 Native Americans living in TN by giving them a voice and a place they feel safe.” says NAIA president Sheryl Prevatte.
Several tribes were represented at the Pow Wow and they all shared their rich cultures through food, dance, and selling handmade items.
The NAIA is planning on building a permanent location coined, The Circle of Life, in the near future.
The crowd in Nashville gathered for an evening of somber remembrance for those who were lost last night in Las Vegas.
The event was put together in a couple of hours by Nashville Mayor, Megan Barry. Country Celebrities such as Vince Gill from The Eagles and Keith Urban performed on stage.
Candles were handed out but the wind was strong enough to blow the flame out quickly. Coincidently, the theme of the vigil was to “Be the light in times of darkness.”
“It’s devastating and scary because you never heard of anything like that happening here before.”
Dalton and his mom Rachel have called this area of Newport home for the last 15 years…when an incident like this changed their idea of being safe.
“He’s never allowed to ride his bike out here at all,” Rachel says.
Dalton says its only a 5 minute bike ride from his house to his friend’s house and only 100 yards away a man jumped out of the woods and tried to grab him off his bike and then chased him down the street.
“So I was pedaling just fast enough to get a coast going down the hill and just out of the corner of my eye saw someone leap at me from the woods,” Explains Dalton.
Rachel still has some questions, “Absolutely shocked liked my son said you would never think that would ever happen especially living her in this small town everyone knowing everyone the next question would be who?”
The ‘who’ in question is still unknown.
Dalton said it was around dusk when this happened and he didn’t see the face.
“I really just prayed to god and just pedaled on.”
The Cocke County Sherrifs’ Office says they are looking into the incident.
Written by Emily Gibbons.
Nearby neighbor Nancy Miles knew something was going on at an apartment on her street.
“I’ve been suspicious of that apartment for quite a time now.”
That same apartment, located off of Dayton street in Knoxville, was closed by order of a judge under the state’s nuisance law.
The nuisance at this residence was multiple 9-1-1 overdose calls over the last five months.
Assistant District Attorney Sean McDermott explains the severity of the case.
“Basically this apartment was a modern day opioid den, a basis for people using and selling narcotics…resulting in multiple overdose and one death.”
Father & daughter, Gary and Cassandra Canupp lived in the apartment and were arrested on drug related charges.
On one of those overdoes calls a victim died, he was using a mixture of fentanyl and cocaine. The district attorney general’s office told us that it was Cassandra who gave him the drugs.
Nearby residents also had their own suspicions on what was going on in the apartment.
“I would see people coming and going and staying a very short time or going up to his car and leaving they weren’t your typical friends lets have a cup of coffee type,” Miles said.
This residence is the 49th closure by the district attorney’s office and Knoxville police department, in an effort to make neighborhoods safer.
“We had to step in before there was another overdoes at this location,” explained McDermott.
The Gentry-Griffy funeral chapel has been located in Fountain City for over 60 years now…5 years ago they added an on site crematory which has caused some concerns for neighbors.
Today Penny Berridge shared her concern with us.
“I’m opposed to it because it’s a health hazard, a visual hazard, there is no reason for it there is not another one anywhere inside of a community.”
She is talking about how it is located next to residential areas…but John Ricci seems to have no problem with it.
“I mean its an issue that shouldn’t be an issue and I don’t see why it shouldn’t bother anybody.”
The smoke that comes out is a regular part of the crematory process which Knox County Air Quality Management said the crematory has all the right permits to burn, with no harmful effects from the smoke.
“It goes into the air and it doesn’t bother anybody I’ve never smelled anything I’ve never even seen smoke from the building,” Ricci said.
Last week concerns were raised when a video was posted online showing black smoke coming from the crematory.
The funeral chapel released a statement on Facebook saying there was a “ unique situation that caused a brief intermission of smoke.” and “ self-reported themselves to Knox County Air Quality.”
The crematory is up-to-date on inspections. The last one was on June 20th where a previous inspection showed a temperature recording chart needed repaired and it was then fixed.